The story goes on in New Braunfels, Texas. John Schroeder, who was arrested in the cheese section of a local grocery store for wearing a Marilyn Manson t-shirt with the words "I am the God of Fuck" on the back, had his case thrown out earlier this month by a Texas trial judge. However, the case has been dismissed "without prejudice", which means that the prosecutor is allowed to refile and proceed with further action against Schroeder. (Please see http://www.theroc.org/updates/mansontx.htm for a history of this story.) The Texas ACLU plans to file charges against the initial arrest for obvious reasons.
"It was all very technical. The judge did not reach the First Amendment issues in granting motion to squash" explains Jay Jacobson, executive director of the Texas ACLU. "Because we were defending our client, we raised a First Amendment issue along with several other issues. . . . One of the issues we raised was that the complaint was deficient because it did not provide adequate notice as to why Mr. Schroeder was being charged. All the citation said was, "lewd display." Well, thank goodness for loopholes, eh? If it weren't for these "procedural defects" John Schroeder would now be a criminal in New Braunfels, Texas.
"The city doesn't think it's a First Amendment issue. That is an outrage. This is definitely a clear First Amendment issue and has now become a matter of principle." Well put, Ms. Schroeder. Olga Schroeder, John's mom, claims the city is making her son out to be a scapegoat. "I still don't understand why the city officials are so concerned with someone wearing a t-shirt. There are much greater societal problems that city officials should be concerned with. My son has been singled out."
Jay Jacobson, John's attorney, is confident the ACLU will be victorious in their offensive. However, we here at R.O.C. leave nothing to chance when it comes to matters as these; therefore we continue to ask for your help in keeping the charges against Schroeder thrown out, based not on loopholes, but on solid law--namely the Constitution of the United States. Please contact the following and let them know you agree with the ACLU's action and that the city should file this case under "mismanaged law enforcement", i.e. the CHEESE section.
State Representative Edmund Kuempel
Room 1N. 12, Capitol Building
Austin, TX 78711
Texas State Attorney General
Austin, TX 78711
Stay updated with all the ACLU's actions at: http://www.aclu.org
Thanks to Nina Crowley and the Mass. M.I.C. as always for so much information: http://www.massmic.com/mmic.html
See also Freedom Forum: http://www.freedomforum.org